O'Reilly on Weed

For those of you who (like me) missed the O'Reilly Factor appearance by Ricardo Cortes, author of the children's marijuana book It's Just a Plant, it's available here. The interview is notable for its surprisingly mild tone and for O'Reilly's concession, about a minute in, that "Just Say No doesn't always work." Since the book's anti-prohibition message is not exactly subtle, it's odd that O'Reilly latches on to Cortes' expression of thanks to George Soros, a major patron of the drug policy reform movement, as evidence of the author's support for marijuana legalization. Cortes, for his part, is weirdly evasive about why he thanked Soros (the book was supported by two Soros-funded groups, the Marijuana Policy Project and the Drug Policy Alliance) and what he thinks about the drug laws, although he eventually says he has a legalization plan that may or may not be similar to the one Soros supports.

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    Maybe it's just me, but through all the debates, I don't think I've ever heard a good argument for keeping marijuana illegal. It's almost like this understood-but-never-spoken rule among drug war proponents that keeping it illegal is an absolute good, and thus, making the case for such is unnecessary. Or is it that they know that all their strongest arguments have been laughed out of validity so badly, it's best if they just ignore the need for valid arguments...

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    Gateway drug blah blah blah.

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    >> Maybe it's just me, but through all the debates, I don't think I've ever heard a good argument for keeping marijuana illegal.

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    >> Maybe it's just me, but through all the debates, I don't think I've ever heard a good argument for keeping marijuana illegal.

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    "For example, what if some pot addict starts driving and starts to halusinate and caused an accident."

    Were you be gettin you weed? Please let me knows soes I's can get somes too.

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    Where have you been my sweet Juanita, HnR's most adorable troll?

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    I love it when O'Reilly claims he doesn't drink. And then he goes on to say he only "tastes" wine.

    Yep. And Clinton didn't inhale, either.

    What a fucking moron.

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    i don't know what the hell to do...i am terribly upset to find out that now i have to like soros becouse he is for ligilization but i am also gleefully happy that now all foaming at the mouth o'reilly haters here have to like O'reilly...such a colundrum.

    (side note i really don't hate sorros i just don't like him and i really don't like o'reilly i just don't hate him)

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    "Gateway drug blah blah blah."

    The Drug War equivalent of the "Not One Step Back" order given to the German armies at Stalingrad and El Alamein.

    And likely to produce the same outcome.

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    One argument, if you could call it that, for keeping weed illegal goes like this -- alcohol and tobacco are bad, mmkay, but for certain historical and cultural reasons they would be politically hard to criminalize. Cannabis and other drugs, on the other hand, are easier to criminalize. One day, all intoxicating or euphoria-inducing substances will be illegal. We're making that happen drug by drug. In the meantime, let's lot reverse the trend by decriminalizing pot, even though we are in this wacky transitional state were you can brew your own beer, but are get locked in a cage and have your life financially and emotionally traumatized if you are found to grow your own weed.

    One day, all pleasant drugs will be illegal, and the only consolation we'll have is that the law will be consistent.

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    >> One day, all pleasant drugs will be illegal

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    How much money does Soros give Reason?

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    "OK, buy why? Other than to be consistant with this countries puritan heritage and to continue the 19th century temperance movement; I cannot understand why this should be so."

    Because happiness and a sense of well-being should not be accessible through mere pharmacology. It should come through hard work, or prayer, and even then it should not exceed a certain level into outright ecstacy. I'm sure there are many more possible excuses.

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    Evan wrote he's never heard a GOOD reason for keeping mj outlawed, not that he's never heard any reason.

    Juanita, remember when you didn't post here? I miss that.

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    In many people's estimation, the reason I gave is a good one. Its not in my estimation of course.

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    Patrick,
    That justifies why one shouldn't use it. Not the criminilization.

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    Because happiness and a sense of well-being should not be accessible through mere pharmacology. It should come through hard work, or prayer, and even then it should not exceed a certain level into outright ecstacy. I'm sure there are many more possible excuses.

    All will be rewarded in the afterlife, Patrick.

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    All will be rewarded in the afterlife, Patrick.

    Please define "rewarded".

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    Because happiness and a sense of well-being should not be accessible through mere pharmacology.

    Tell that to someone with ADD who needs Ritalin to keep focused, or someone suffering through bi-polar disorder who needs lithium to control their moods.

    What are you, a gorram Scientologist? (If so, then HAIL XENU! FUCK HUBBARD!)

    It should come through hard work...

    You obviously don't have a real job, or you'd know that's a pile of bullshit.

    ...or prayer...

    I'm sorry, but I can't think of a BIGGER waste of time than "prayer." I'd rather do pot than devote so much as one neuron in my brain toward someone or something that doesn't exist.

    ...and even then it should not exceed a certain level into outright ecstacy.

    Boy, you must be fun at parties, at least until the white bread and mayonnaise sandwiches run out.

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    Someone didn't raise his sarcasm flag high enough.

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    All will be rewarded in the afterlife, Patrick.

    Please define "rewarded".


    72 virgins! Don't you know anything?

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    The drug war is absolutely the easiest thing for me to take a libertarian position on. The idea that the majority can legally step in and control, by force, the nonviolent activities of the minority is the antithesis of freedom. The fact that it's so common in today's society doesn't make it any less extreme. No one who values freedom in any real way can support this, even leaving aside the obvious negative effects it has on our society today.

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    I said "today" and "society" twice. That's how you know I'm serious.

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    Soros and Me Part VI

    Bankruptcy Bills Break into Global Bloodletting as Ballooning Bankruptcies Bleed Bush?s Bungling Economy and Boom Boom, Boom, it?s a Real Estate Bust all over? But, but, but?

    By Alex S. Gabor

    A 10% annual return on an investment of $400 billion should return $40 billion a year, but not in our current war economy. Americans will never see a single penny return on billions spent so far on the war on terror.

    It is a growing liability not only in financial and economic terms but in social terms for generations to come.

    This reality is hitting home so much so that the current administration is changing its marketing and sales strategy to the global investment community by renaming it ?The Long War? and shuffling top level positions within in an effort to save face, which it lost on the day it was announced ?Mission Accomplished?.

    Some foreign central bankers have come up short shrift of any sense of economic sanity.

    This does not bode well for the US long bond or the U.S. Dollar.

    In studying investors and particularly billionaires? buying habits of risky and blue chip investments, it is noted that they tend to stay away from mismanaged companies, almost as if relying on a sixth sense to avoid failure, most of the time.

    They also know when it is time to shift away from mismanaged national economies and try to get out before the stampedes from burning theatres wake up the sleepy hollows of humans hankering for a helping of wealth while the captains of industry are fast asleep at the wheel.2005 saw the most noteworthy year for bankruptcy in the history of that legal economic bloodletting process.

    America and the world saw some of the largest public company filings ever. The all-time infamous list of chapter 11 "super-mega" cases added three new super novas in 2005.

    Delta Airlines (tenth on the all-time list) was the first to file in September. Saddled with over $28 billion in debt, Delta became yet another victim of the lingering malaise that has beleaguered U.S. and foreign air carriers alike since the 2001 terrorist attacks.

    Blaming nearly $22 billion in debt, crushing pension obligations and skyrocketing fuel costs, Northwest Airlines also filed for chapter 11 in September.

    That is $50 billion in debt relief from just two firms who cannot compete in a restructuring industry bloated with antiquated planes, much like the auto industry which faces stiff future competition for fuel economy from alternative fuel powered transportation systems.

    Contrary to this sickly industry which was impacted by 911 more than any other economic or fundamental event, and in which some who shorted their stock prior to the event profited enormously but are yet to be brought to justice, George Soros has stayed the course through his Soros Fund Management by retaining a 14% stake in Jet Blue and Hainan Airlines, two growing airlines who are capturing greater market share away from the beleaguered dinosaurs with badly managed debt and the pension liabilities of older airline businesses.

    The Scandal-ridden futures trader Refco, Inc. sought chapter 11 protection in October, listing over $33 billion in assets and $16.8 billion in debt, which entitled the company to slot number five on the all-time big bankos list. The public story for the cause was a missing $500 million which had been paid back the day after the bankruptcy filing.

    The real story was covered up in order to prevent widespread panic in the financial system, namely the parking of open naked short positions which would never need to be covered in thousands of accounts held by Refco for dozens of outside financial institutions and broker dealers playing in the derivatives market.

    By such instruments is meant convertible debentures, futures, options, puts and calls whose underlying assets had become worthless in the financial markets.
    In 2006 and beyond, there appeared to be many efforts being made by the administration through the regulatory process to stem the bloodletting so as to avoid the patient hemorrhaging from uncovered naked short positions amounting to over a trillion dollars and $200 billion in losses to small business investors over the past decade.

    This has been all dross to placate angered small business men who see the rape and pillaging of their earning power as more than a gross injustice.

    Uncoverable positions in the derivatives market are now estimated to exceed $15 trillion and rising as the national debt approaches an unconscionable $10 trillion.

    These gaping black holes in the economy are slowly coming to light through the efforts of scattered groups of investors and lawyers who see the heart of the problem but yet are being denied their perceptions through various forms of legal covering up, rather than forcing the market participants from paying up, which of course would bankrupt some of the largest broker dealers in America who all participated in the scandalous practice of naked shorting.

    The new Fed Chairman and incoming Treasury Secretary have inherited an octopus whose tentacles have outgrown its ability to survive without some massive tactical surgery on the part of the patient. But the patient has no scalpel.

    The entire class action lawsuit industry is being rattled by the indictments of prominent top law partners and their shilling lackeys who got kickbacks for acting as lead plaintiffs in dozens of lawsuits against major US corporations over the past 25 years.

    There is no place in America where the long arm of justice has not uncovered corruption.
    Power generator Calpine Corporation filed the eighth-largest U.S. bankruptcy on December 20, 2005 listing more than $22.5 billion in liabilities after prices for natural gas, used to fuel its plants, soared to record highs.

    Soros, still the 55th richest man in the world, in the previous quarter had dumped a large portion of his energy holdings not necessarily presciently but because of market fundamentals which indicated that continued rising oil and gas prices would force the fed to keep raising interest rates to fight inflation.
    He of late has been shifting out of consumer, health care, oil, energy and war stocks, and is betting more and more on technology.

    The raising of rates is not over as the Fed is battling to keep the dollar the global oil gold standard against Iran?s plan to establish the Iranian Oil Bourse which will shift trillions of petrodollars into petroeuros as contracts on that exchange will be settled only in Euros, a soaring currency against the US Dollar as central bankers and global flight capital seeks safer havens.

    Several multi-billion dollar bankruptcy filings in 2005 did not make the all-time list. American Business Financial Services, Inc., the holding company for American Business Credit, which originates, sells and services home equity and small business loans, filed for chapter 11 in January of 2005, listing just over $1 billion in assets.

    The mortgage industry is down 50% from two years ago and even larger bankruptcies loom on the horizon.
    This was symptomatic of the growing ever larger ballooning of the regionalized real estate markets, where previously both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac went through some serious scrutiny by Congress and federal regulators.

    Both of these government sponsored institutions were spanked by mega lotto sized fines, but they didn?t cry very long before they were back to business as usual.

    In fact, 90% of all loans underwritten using the stated income and no asset verification loans which are then repackaged and sold off to foreign investors contain lies, false financial information and outright corrupt data which is yet to be uncovered by the regulators who keep looking the other way, despite many settlements in the past five years for predatory lending practices.

    Both FNM and FRE managed to come through relatively unscathed, and rumbling forward they are equally open to severe losses in their portfolios due to rising short term interest rates and foreign investors losing confidence in the squeaky American war machine as civil wars gradually break out all over the Middle East, miring hundreds of thousands of troops into a morass of mindless murdering of the minions of the Muslim world.

    Facilities-based competitive local-exchange telecommunications carrier McLeodUSA filed for bankruptcy for the second time in three years at the end of October, 2005 listing $1.025 billion in assets.

    Last February saw filings by Winn-Dixie Stores, Inc. with $2.6 billion in assets, a regional grocery chain with 920 stores in eight Southeastern states and the Bahamas, which like Safeway and Albertsons still faces growing competition from Costco and Wal-Mart stores.

    Rumblings of General Motors possibly filing bankruptcy worked their way through the market but by the end of April of 2006, those had died down and the PR men at GM took over, but Soros stayed mostly out of that blue chip according to its SEC filings.

    Now there are rumblings of potentially merging both Ford and GM so there is only one main US auto maker left, to prevent either one from collapse and creating even larger economies of scale, while jobs keep getting sent to places where the cost of doing business is cheaper for labor, the currencies are rising against the dollar, the sales are gaining far faster than in the US, thus setting the stage for more layoffs, more bankruptcies, and ever more foreclosures as rates are risen above the rational expectation of economists who seem to never get it right.

    Tower Automotive, Inc., the world's largest supplier of vehicle frames, sought chapter 11 protections to restructure $1.3 billion in debt that same month.

    Collins & Aikman Corporation, a supplier of car interiors, filed for bankruptcy in May listing approximately $3.2 billion in assets and nearly $2 billion in debt, and citing a cash shortage after U.S. carmaker customers cut production and material costs rose.

    America's biggest auto parts maker Delphi Corporation rounded out the billion-dollar club in 2005. It filed for bankruptcy in October, listing $17 billion in assets and $22 billion in debt, including an $11 billion under funded pension liability.

    ASARCO LLC, a subsidiary of Grupo M鸩co, the world's sixth-largest copper producer, sought chapter 11 protections in August, citing a combination of environmental liabilities, lawsuits from former workers with asbestos-related health problems, high labor and production costs and continuing industrial action. The company listed $1.1 billion in assets and $1.9 billion in debt.

    The results of this curtailment of copper production have seen global copper prices soar to record levels while seigniorage on Lincoln Head pennies by the US Mint seems to be waning in the process.

    The U.S. Penny is the most minted coin in the world. The value of a penny is actually higher than its face amount due to its copper content, which hasn?t really happened since the last time the copper content of pennies was shorted by replacing it with nickel, whose value, which among other commodities, including sugar, zinc, platinum, gold, and various other metals used in industrial production has soared as the Fed and US Treasury have fed almost 3 trillion fresh dollars into an already inflated global economy.

    Overall, 80 public companies filed for chapter 11 protection in 2005, with an aggregate pre-petition asset value of nearly $134 billion. By contrast, 2004 saw 92 public company chapter 11 cases, with an aggregate pre-petition asset value of only $47.7 billion.

    While 2005 was the year for bankruptcy reform, 2006 is the year when America realizes it is under siege.
    After more than five years of partisan infighting, President George W. Bush gave his imprimatur last April 20 to the Bankruptcy Abuse and Consumer Protection Act of 2005.

    The most sweeping changes to U.S. bankruptcy law since 1994 became effective on October 17, 2005, precipitating a blizzard of last-minute consumer bankruptcy filings to avoid the more stringent eligibility requirements created by the new law.

    Since then the number of individual bankruptcies has soared while notices of foreclosure and default have risen by 50% in some states due to adjustable rate mortgage payment shocks to consumers who were suckered into ultra low, some as low as 1%, refinancing schemes, which added to the real estate bubble, a balloon which popped late in November 2005, whose after shocks are just now being rumbled about by the likes of Warren Buffet at the most recent annual stockholders meetings of Berkshire Hathaway, and Soros who in January predicted that the real impact of the blow out of real estate balloon bursting would not be recognized by the vast majority of Americans until some time in 2007.

    It is going to get far worse as $2.7 trillion in adjustable rate mortgages are reset to higher rates, some jumping as high as 3%, over the next 12 months. And fixed rates are not going to be lower any time soon. The entire industry is caught in a trap. It can?t walk out because it is so in love with itself. So it will get blown out!

    But the siege is not from terrorists for they have all been beaten back across the ocean, even rumors of thousands of sleeper cells in the US have all but faded from the front pages of eyeball catching bloggers pages and TV sets.

    It?s not coming from the seething masses of impoverished people who remain the majority of this planet who earn less than $500 a month, denizens of the failed war on poverty of the early 60?s and 70?s, who can hardly survive any pending global economic meltdown.

    Nor is it coming from the millions of drug addicts who have become the de facto casualties of the failed war on drugs, or the five million and counting prisoners of that failed campaign many who are serving life sentences for non-violent crimes in America?s prison system.

    Like the war on poverty, the war on drugs, the war on terror is a failure and has only served to stir up the rebellious nature of humans who do not like liars, tyrants and thieves being in charge of their destinies.

    No, the real siege is coming from smart investors whose capital flight is highlighted by NASDAQ?s recent purchase of 25% of the London Stock Exchange, using borrowed funds from Bank of America, and the New York Stock Exchange Group buyout of Euronext for $10 billion, setting the stage for a huge hedge position against the impending collapse of the US dollar.


    The amount of capital fleeing America in expectation ahead of the collapse, regardless of any secret plunge protection teams at the treasury or Fed, is increasing in quantum leaps because everyone knows, you don?t throw good money after bad, and America?s money has become so corrupt, tainted and dirty, covered in the blood of civilization, that sane men know that the only way to stop a madman is to cut off his money supply.

    And where are these growing trillions in flight capital coming from?

    From the hedge fund industry that is shorting the banks, the real estate trusts, the mortgage industry, the home builders, the title insurers, and any public company which has depended so much on the real estate industry over the past decade of falling interest rates, that their very own myopia is causing the downturn.

    Welcome back stagflation, welcome back George Soros, the stage is set for someone to become the world?s first trillionaire.

    Developing nations hold more than $1.5 trillion in surplus foreign exchange reserves, almost $3 trillion in corporate bonds, and over $3.5 trillion in U.S. government debt obligations, all of it denominated in dollars.

    It is those very same nations who don?t like bullies, bellowing and bloating about their own blunderingly bad foreign policies.

    They?d rather sell than listen to more of it.

    In 1993, Soros leveraged his Quantum Fund to short the British Pound and made $1 billion in one day.

    Today, the stage is set for the next generation of Soros?s to short the dollar and make a trillion in one day. The computer technology is in place. All that is left is for someone to click on the send button.

    Copyright ? 2006 by Alex S. Gabor Syndicate. All World Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.

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    72 virgins! Don't you know anything?

    Wrong heathen! Enjoy your stay in hell. WE get to float on clouds with Grandma and Gramps and our dead pets.

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    Ya know, I'm not sure I can identify the "obvious negative effects" on society, excepting of course the gunfire and violence, which are a result of drugs being illegal, and which would in all liklihood disappear should drugs be legalized.

    Oh, and the money spent on the drug war - that's an obvious negative effect.

    Oh, and wasting cops' time.

    Oh, and clogging courts.

    Oh, and over-crowding prisons.

    I guess those are all pretty obvious negative effects.

    Oh wait - you meant obvious negative effects of people DOING drugs. Huh. Well there's...um...huh. Lost work time? Um, time wasted looking for car keys that were left in the freezer when you were getting ice cream? Um..shit, I don't know.

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    Alex, we're all way too high to read all that.

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